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Laramie Movie Scope:
The Shawshank Redemption

A classic story from Stephen King

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by Robert Roten, Film Critic
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October 25, 1994 -- ``The Shawshank Redemption,'' as noted above, is a standard beginning-to-end movie. The dialogue, based on a Stephen King story, is not as sharp as in ``Pulp Fiction,'' but it does have what ``Pulp Fiction'' lacked. Characters worth caring about and who actually learn something about themselves as the film progresses.

The film deals with two convicted murderers in prison, Andy Dufresne, played by Tim Robbins, and ``Red'' Redding, played by Morgan Freeman. As the story unfolds, it turns out that Dufresne was wrongly convicted, but is forced to stay in prison because he, a former banker, has become too important to the warden's illegal money laundering schemes.

As the film unwinds, the two men become fast friends. Both find ways to cope with the horror of prison life in the 1950s and 1960s and both eventually even dare to hope.

Director/writer Frank Darabont brings considerable passion to the prison reform message in the story. The characters are very well developed and Freeman and Robbins both are outstanding in their leading roles. Veteran actor James Whitmore is also excellent in a supporting role as the prison librarian.

The film is also very well photographed by Roger Deakins. The production values, in fact, are all first-rate. This is a fine, moving film. It rates an A.

Click here for links to places to buy this movie in video and/or DVD format, the soundtrack, books, even used videos, games and lots of other stuff. I suggest you shop at least two of these places before buying anything. Prices seem to vary continuously. For more information on this film, click on this link to The Internet Movie Database. Type in the name of the movie in the search box and press enter. You will be able to find background information on the film, the actors, and links to much more information.

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Robert Roten can be reached via e-mail at my last name at lariat dot org. [Mailer button: image of letter and envelope]

(If you e-mail me with a question about this or any other movie or review, please mention the name of the movie you are asking the question about, otherwise I may have no way of knowing which film you are referring to)